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Drokrath
2016-01-22, 03:11 PM
I love role playing food-what your character eats can say a lot about them, their history, their culture, etc.
So what does each species like to eat? I have a few theories but feel free to add your own

Dragonborn: strongly prefer meat to vegetables. Fowl is somewhere in between, but they really like fish for some reason.

Elves: fruits & vegetables, typical

Nagaji: Not entirely sure, but for some reason I feel like they would really like honey

Dwarves: buscuits, sausage & other breakfast meats. Hearty foods, and mead of course

Halflings: halflings invented pancakes. Eggs, in every form, are a staple. Roast corn, fowl, and garden veggies

Mark Hall
2016-01-22, 04:15 PM
In Hackmaster, gnomes are vegetarians. There's some debate as to whether they're obligate vegetarians (i.e. cannot eat or digest meat) or cultural vegetarians (don't eat meat because they can talk to animals).

VoxRationis
2016-01-22, 06:48 PM
In my settings, dwarves are obligate carnivores—at least 80% of their diet, and preferably more, has to be meat. Obviously, this is a severe constraint on their population size. Alcohol works as a secondary source of calories, but they aren't any more immune to inebriation or alcoholism than anyone else, so it's really a fallback, "this or starve," measure.

nedz
2016-01-22, 07:05 PM
Kender: Nuts and Fruitcake

Sredni Vashtar
2016-01-22, 08:55 PM
I feel like the sterotypes for elves and dwarves are backwards regarding diet. Elves should be big on game and meat, since the forest provides the opportunity to hunt animals. Dwarves should be nearly vegan, with a diet consisting of mostly root veggies and mushrooms, perhaps even supplementing it with insects.

Janus
2016-01-22, 09:27 PM
The EverQuest tabletop game had a description of racial cuisine hidden away in the trade skills sections. I don't have the book with me, so I'll share what I remember:


Humans- Pretty much what we eat and have eaten in real life.
High Elves- Anything classy and gourmet, appealing both in taste and presentation. A skilled chef is as valued as a skilled mage.
Wood Elves- Lot of nuts, vegetables, fruits, and meat. Whatever the forest provides.
Dark Elves- Hearts are a favorite. All meals include blood in some way. They're Evil in their eating, I love it :D.
Dwarves- Ale, meat, and mushrooms.
Halflings- Lots of baked goods. They're particularly praised for their sweets.
Gnomes- Don't remember, but they invented the Gnomish Brewing Barrel, which halves fermentation time. It's consider the gnomes' single greatest contribution to the world.
Either Ogres or Trolls- Generally whatever, but one of them has a delicacy where they stuff a gnome full of poison mushrooms and roast him or her on a spit, then eat it like a kebab.

goto124
2016-01-22, 09:45 PM
I feel like the sterotypes for elves and dwarves are backwards regarding diet. Elves should be big on game and meat, since the forest provides the opportunity to hunt animals. Dwarves should be nearly vegan, with a diet consisting of mostly root veggies and mushrooms, perhaps even supplementing it with insects.

Here's a National Geographic article on hunter-gatherer diets (http://www.nationalgeographic.com/foodfeatures/evolution-of-diet/), where they said such diets are largely fruits and vegetables with some meat. Even when there're animals running around in a forest, catching them is difficult. Why not just get some fruits and nuts, which are just hanging off a tree for easy picking?

I picked out quotes from the article:


Year-round observations confirm that hunter-gatherers often have dismal success as hunters. The Hadza and Kung bushmen of Africa, for example, fail to get meat more than half the time when they venture forth with bows and arrows. This suggests it was even harder for our ancestors who didn’t have these weapons. “Everybody thinks you wander out into the savanna and there are antelopes everywhere, just waiting for you to bonk them on the head,”


It turns out that “man the hunter” is backed up by “woman the forager,” who, with some help from children, provides more calories during difficult times. When meat, fruit, or honey is scarce, foragers depend on “fallback foods,” says Brooks. The Hadza get almost 70 percent of their calories from plants. The Kung traditionally rely on tubers and mongongo nuts, the Aka and Baka Pygmies of the Congo River Basin on yams, the Tsimane and Yanomami Indians of the Amazon on plantains and manioc, the Australian Aboriginals on nut grass and water chestnuts.

I don't know any RL equivalents of underground-dwelling dwarves, though. I suppose they could eat the many animals that live underground? Or the roots of plants. I don't really know underground ecosystems.

kraftcheese
2016-01-22, 10:12 PM
I feel like the sterotypes for elves and dwarves are backwards regarding diet. Elves should be big on game and meat, since the forest provides the opportunity to hunt animals. Dwarves should be nearly vegan, with a diet consisting of mostly root veggies and mushrooms, perhaps even supplementing it with insects.

Speaking of elves eating meat, I like the way that The Elder Scrolls lore talks about Bosmer (wood elf) eating habits; they're strict carnivores because of their link to plant life, and I'm sure I read something about ritual cannibalism of their dead? But other than that, they live in tree cities, shoot bows, all your typical evlen stuff.

kraftcheese
2016-01-22, 10:14 PM
Also Dark Sun halflings are aggressively cannibalistic.

Ravens_cry
2016-01-22, 10:55 PM
Kender: Nuts and Fruitcake
I see what you did there.:smallamused:

hymer
2016-01-23, 04:06 AM
feel free to add your own

In my current old-school campaign, it'd be this:

Dwarves: Anything cheap. Dwarven constitution is a big help here, because the (Iron) dwarves have enormous population density in an area that is not good for food production. They have to import most of their food, and thankfully they can eat just about anything and do well. Root vegetables are considered good eating (not for the eating experience, which is considered unimportant, but because they grew underground), and dried meat is fighting food, given to troops going on patrol or to war.
Organized pissups are given regularly, where cheap beer and potent spirits are drunk to excess. But outside of this, dwarves drink the clearest water from deep wells and high springs.

High Elves: Called Sea Elves and being the great traders, they have the most refined food culture, and the most inclusive and varied. They experiment with anything they can get their hands on, and they are tremendously able hunters and fishers - but of course never threaten populations, both for practical and sentimental reasons. Elven pastries are particularly sought after by rich humans.

Sylvan Elves: There's little food culture that can be attributed across the varied tribes. They eat whatever they fancy at the time, usually using unelaborate (but often time-consuming) methods. They don't go in for recipes, preferring to cook as the mood dictates. Because of where they live, they are heavy on nuts, berries and roots.

Imperial Humans: The staple is wheat bread and oil, with cheese, eggs, fruit and vegetables added in as available. Meat is sought after, but expensive. Fish is a delicacy, and aristocrats and other rich people eat seafood daily, if possible (and are noticeably taller for it). Imperial humans are the great growers of vines, and they have a rich wine culture in an area that supports it.

Tribal Humans: The most meat-filled diets, as they are mostly seminomadic herdspeople (cattle, goats, and horses, mostly, with some sheep added in mostly for wool). Cheese, eggs and barley-based porridges and un-leavened bread are common.

Ettina
2016-01-23, 07:19 AM
I don't know any RL equivalents of underground-dwelling dwarves, though. I suppose they could eat the many animals that live underground? Or the roots of plants. I don't really know underground ecosystems.

Probably too deep for roots. Even tree roots only go a few meters down, and dwarven caves are typically much deeper than that.

Underground animals and fungi are most likely. Maybe even go fishing for blind fish in an underwater cave.:smallsmile:

JAL_1138
2016-01-23, 08:19 AM
Dwarves feed mainly on subterranean plants, such as the famed "plump helmet," and meat from various animals (and occasionally insects) from both the surface and underground. Dwarven cheese is legendary, to the point it makes frequent appearance in dwarven artwork, even carved into their greatest monuments. They require copious amounts of alcohol daily to function normally, and can brew it from nearly anything. Contrary to popular belief, the dwarves are possibly the finest and most inventive cooks in the world--sometimes in seeming defiance of physics--having even devised a way to make a good meal out of finely-minced beer.

And then there's the bread. Dwarf bread is not so much a foodstuff or even an emergency ration as it is something to keep you going--i.e., going to any lengths necessary to keep from having to try eating dwarf bread. It's not baked; it's forged. Its primary use is as weaponry--clubs, hammers, throwing weapons, and the like.

kraftcheese
2016-01-23, 08:36 AM
In my current old-school campaign, it'd be this:

Dwarves: Anything cheap. Dwarven constitution is a big help here, because the (Iron) dwarves have enormous population density in an area that is not good for food production. They have to import most of their food, and thankfully they can eat just about anything and do well. Root vegetables are considered good eating (not for the eating experience, which is considered unimportant, but because they grew underground), and dried meat is fighting food, given to troops going on patrol or to war.
Organized pissups are given regularly, where cheap beer and potent spirits are drunk to excess. But outside of this, dwarves drink the clearest water from deep wells and high springs.

High Elves: Called Sea Elves and being the great traders, they have the most refined food culture, and the most inclusive and varied. They experiment with anything they can get their hands on, and they are tremendously able hunters and fishers - but of course never threaten populations, both for practical and sentimental reasons. Elven pastries are particularly sought after by rich humans.

Sylvan Elves: There's little food culture that can be attributed across the varied tribes. They eat whatever they fancy at the time, usually using unelaborate (but often time-consuming) methods. They don't go in for recipes, preferring to cook as the mood dictates. Because of where they live, they are heavy on nuts, berries and roots.

Imperial Humans: The staple is wheat bread and oil, with cheese, eggs, fruit and vegetables added in as available. Meat is sought after, but expensive. Fish is a delicacy, and aristocrats and other rich people eat seafood daily, if possible (and are noticeably taller for it). Imperial humans are the great growers of vines, and they have a rich wine culture in an area that supports it.

Tribal Humans: The most meat-filled diets, as they are mostly seminomadic herdspeople (cattle, goats, and horses, mostly, with some sheep added in mostly for wool). Cheese, eggs and barley-based porridges and un-leavened bread are common.

Sea Elves sound like they'd host a good dinner party tbh

Malimar
2016-01-23, 10:53 AM
Dwarves feed mainly on subterranean plants, such as the famed "plump helmet," and meat from various animals (and occasionally insects) from both the surface and underground. Dwarven cheese is legendary, to the point it makes frequent appearance in dwarven artwork, even carved into their greatest monuments. They require copious amounts of alcohol daily to function normally, and can brew it from nearly anything. Contrary to popular belief, the dwarves are possibly the finest and most inventive cooks in the world--sometimes in seeming defiance of physics--having even devised a way to make a good meal out of finely-minced beer.

And then there's the bread. Dwarf bread is not so much a foodstuff or even an emergency ration as it is something to keep you going--i.e., going to any lengths necessary to keep from having to try eating dwarf bread. It's not baked; it's forged. Its primary use is as weaponry--clubs, hammers, throwing weapons, and the like.

My favorite minor mod to Dwarf Fortress is to alter Dwarves so they're willing to eat the flesh of sapients. Goblin invasions = meat christmas.

Grim Portent
2016-01-23, 10:56 AM
My favorite minor mod to Dwarf Fortress is to alter Dwarves so they're willing to eat the flesh of sapients. Goblin invasions = meat christmas.

It also cuts down on miasma by emptying your corpse stockpiles. :smallbiggrin:

ThreadNecro5
2016-01-23, 05:04 PM
This seems like a fun way to get to thinking on the homebrew setting I am working on. Not all of these are playable, but are common.

non-homebrew races:

Humans, Giants, Minotaurs, and any half human (besides Orcs):
Anything regional and vaguely edible, Giants just use larger varieties and a larger quantity.

Elves:
Prefer to eat anything they can kill, indeed it is expected of them to personally hunt for food but any member of the clan can provide food to its members.

Orcs and Trolls:
Anything, everything, anyone, and the kitchen sink.

Merfolk and other aquatic races:
A lot of raw fish and leafy vegetables, many have a taste for land-based foods.

Trox:
Diet high in tubers and insects, tail rations consist of lutefisk made of spider.

Gargoyles:
mostly raw meats and the occasional fruit supplemented by whatever is stolen from merchants, and with rocks.

Dragonkin Races (Dragons are weird in my setting, Kobold, Dragons, Drakes, and such all are the same race and are under this banner):
Diet varies with climate, a traditional meal of the lowborn is a steak cooked with an equivalent of the local lords breath weapon (e.g. fire, electricity, tenderized with acids, etc.). those of higher stations prefer anything exotic, complex, and decadent.

Lizardfolk:
Fish, shellfish, adventurers, and magical crystals from their fallen empire.

Homebrew Races:

Flamelurkers (lava fish, with limbs):
Lava living creatures and underground mineral formations.

Lafe (a race of enslaved spider-giants who look like a smaller amygdala from Bloodborne):
Whatever can be scavenged from urban refuse, worms, rats, the like. Are partly sustained by the magic imprisoning several trapped gods and so occasionally congregate around the binding sights.

Pretenders (man eating insects disguised as humans):
A mixture of humanoids, fermented meat products, and honey like substances.

Melos (giant Vikings obsessed with fighting Dragons):
Diet is mainly a plant that grows in hot springs that is entirely edible, supported by meat from polar animals and Dragonkin

Unnamed scorpion people:
Eat mainly preserved cactus-based products, the meat of giant insects, and travellers.

Unnamed hive-living insects:
Are agricultural in nature growing a number of underground crops.

Unnamed blood drinking avians:
'Drink' blood through their claws, they keep slaves with controlled diets to flavour their meals.


And I think that's all the main races. well, theirs a type of flying plant but they use photosynthesis.

Sredni Vashtar
2016-01-23, 05:07 PM
Here's a National Geographic article on hunter-gatherer diets (http://www.nationalgeographic.com/foodfeatures/evolution-of-diet/), where they said such diets are largely fruits and vegetables with some meat. Even when there're animals running around in a forest, catching them is difficult. Why not just get some fruits and nuts, which are just hanging off a tree for easy picking?

I picked out quotes from the article:


I don't know any RL equivalents of underground-dwelling dwarves, though. I suppose they could eat the many animals that live underground? Or the roots of plants. I don't really know underground ecosystems.

I just feel that the stereotypes tend to lean towards the wrong directions, with dwarves being "manly" and eating lots of red meat that they couldn't possibly get to, and elves being more feminine (in a manner of speaking) and therefore being vegetarian/vegan, despite being in the right environment and having enough natural (and developed) advantages to be frighteningly efficient hunters.

I'm aware that the hunter-gatherer balance is normally more in favor of gatherer than hunter for the reason that meat can usually run away and you don't need to chase fruit.

As for underground ecosystems, traditional dwarves live way deeper than any realistic subterranean dwellers. They'd need an entire underground ecosystem to maintain them in that way, and it would very likely be completely alien to us. Shallower dwarven settlements that can take advantage of root veggies and similar food sources make more sense (to me, at least).

Cealocanth
2016-01-23, 07:51 PM
In the Age of Exploration game I ran, the races kept hints of their past diets in their importation preferences, but due to a blossoming interdimensional shipping industry, almost anything could be imported. The system was 4e, so the races were pretty classic, with some additions.

Humans: Big on sour, spicy, salty, or very pungent foods such as cheeses. The biggest importer of spices in the world. Humans have a weaker sense of smell than most races, and a more generalized ability to eat things that wouldn't exactly be considered fresh by other races. Their love of salted meats, pickles, and hard cheese makes humans particularly adept to life at sea, as they can keep their food without magical preservation.

Elves: Elves tend to enjoy more subtle, delicate meals. Poor elves capitalize on simple, but bold flavors brought. Porridge, breads, light cheese, fish, and light wines or meads are elvish favorites. The elven pallette developed strongly around hunting and gathering and still clings to those roots, so elves don't particularly enjoy complex flavors. They are quite big fans of stew and soup, though.

Dwarves: Dwarves developed underground, so have a strong sense of smell and texture. They can taste where their food has been, and the dirt on the hands of those that prepared it. Cheese, fish, salted meats, and pickles are abominations to most dwarves. Dwarves eat basically one or two things at a meal, more than that is overwhelming. A single steamed potato says as much to a dwarf as a three course meal says to a human. It doesn't have any more nutritional value, though. Ironically, due to the alchohol removing almost all traces of past existence, dwarves are also fans of fermented beverages, because it allows them to taste things like wood, metal, and stone. Dwarves will often only drink clean water because they can often taste pathogens in it. Wheat and certain fruits also are hostile to dwarven digestive systems.

Halflings: The hill folk were the first to develop agriculture, and have found pretty much every way to prepare vegetables. They are solely vegetarians, but are fans of breads, cakes, and pasta. A good chef is as valued as a king in halfling society, for what's left. This has had them slip into most societies as cooks and chefs. The other races often lack the palette for complex vegetarian cuisine.

Gnomes, Pixies, and other Feywild races: With the exception of Eladrin, which are primarily hunters, these races developed from cowardly foragers hiding from the predators of the dense jungle of the feywild. Their diet consists almost entirety of fruit, nuts, tubers, leaves, and grasses. Gnomes have particularly powerful digestive systems, and can eat things that many other races would consider inedible. The diet of a gnome is a significantly more refined version of the diet of a cow.

Dragonborn: Meat, fish, and insects. Dragonborn are a predator race, and thus are quite rare. They can persist on raw meat alone, but cooking is appreciated. They can taste varieties of amino acids that most gatherer races cannot, and thus will actively enjoy things that most other races throw out, such as liver, brains, or blood. At a dragonborn feast, there will often be multiple kinds of meat served in the same meal.

Orcs: Orcs actually share a diet much like Dragonborn mixed with elves. Vegetables are eaten, but not actively farmed or processed in any way. Meat is very appreciated, but most orcs will not go to the lengths dragonborn will. Orcs are among the only races (besides gnolls and other carrion species), to cannibalize their own. Members of other races are often pit-roasted and served communally as well.

Gnolls, Bird-People, Goblins, etc. - These races are descended from scavengers. They are fans of preserved meats, but they often eat spoiled meat, even raw. This adds aspects of flavor to the meat that simply cannot be obtained when fresh. Raw meat tastes better to these people. Dried meat is pointless and bland. Gnolls are actually known to keep meat until maggots hatch to add extra flavor and pungency, much like humans keep cheeses until they mold.

BWR
2016-01-23, 07:53 PM
I run Mystara so culture and location determine food more than race. Alfheim elves are basically a step up from hunter-gatherer, some simple agriculture, but tend to eat simple foods gathered in the forest and not processed to any great degree beyond fire (if that). Sea Elves are a bit more refined and the elves in Alphatia have a culture very similar to the dominant human one. The eves of Glantri eat basically what everyone else in Glantri eats.
In the Ethengar plains the local human, goblin, orc and ogre populations are basically Mongols so have a comparable diet. Karameikos is a mix of Mediterranean (from the Thyatian upper class) and eastern European (from the Traldar natives) cuisines.

goto124
2016-01-23, 10:31 PM
I'm aware that the hunter-gatherer balance is normally more in favor of gatherer than hunter for the reason that meat can usually run away and you don't need to chase fruit.

Meanwhile, in an alternate universe, meat literally grows on trees, while the fruits and vegetables that run amok in the meat forest are elusive and often outright dangerous.

Nifft
2016-01-23, 10:44 PM
tbh

Mmm, tasty breaded humans.

goto124
2016-01-23, 10:59 PM
I wonder if there're desert dwarves. As in, dwarves who live underground during the day when it's scorching hot, and come out to gather or hunt for food only at night.

hymer
2016-01-24, 02:18 AM
Mmm, tasty breaded humans.

Cannibalism wasn't my intended implication. :smallsmile:

JAL_1138
2016-01-24, 06:00 AM
Dwarf Fortress elves do eat dwarves and humans, if they kill them. There's precedent.

And on the other side of the coin, there's thri-kreen and halflings in Dark Sun, who trade recipies for Elf Tartare...preferably within earshot of the party's elven member, while shiftily glancing at him.

Mr.Moron
2016-01-24, 06:06 AM
In the last game I ran, elves being the forest dwellers they are were capable of eating things humans can't eat at all: pinecones, acorns, tree bark, wood, leaves, even soil assuming it was rich enough. These foods were staples, though generally considered pretty plain. Your average elf would probably still rather steak & potatoes, if only because they're more flavorful. Much like asking them to eat their broccoli an Elf parent might find themsleves having to remind their children to "Finish your acorns, sweetie".

goto124
2016-01-24, 06:51 AM
"But Dad! This is squirrel food!"

kraftcheese
2016-01-24, 08:09 AM
Mmm, tasty breaded humans.

Elf Parmigiano

Sredni Vashtar
2016-01-24, 08:15 AM
Meanwhile, in an alternate universe, meat literally grows on trees, while the fruits and vegetables that run amok in the meat forest are elusive and often outright dangerous.

Remember, if you're being chased by a wild stalk of broccoli, climb the nearest pork tree. However, if it's cauliflower, you're better off just playing dead, because it'll climb right up the tree after you.

Nifft
2016-01-24, 08:43 AM
Cannibalism wasn't my intended implication. :smallsmile:
Elves aren't human, so who was talking about cannibalism?

hymer
2016-01-24, 08:47 AM
Elves aren't human, so who was talking about cannibalism?

Would you like to join the pedantic-obstructionist society? :smalltongue:

Nifft
2016-01-24, 09:50 AM
Would you like to join the pedantic-obstructionist society? :smalltongue:

I would prefer to not join your club, but thanks for the offer.

But seriously, it's not at all clear that eating sentient and/or sapient creatures of a different species qualifies as "cannibalism". You're either forgetting the context of the conversation, or you're giving humans special consideration but ignoring that some fantasy worlds have people who eat dragons (etc.) and that's not regarded as cannibalism.

hymer
2016-01-24, 10:11 AM
But seriously, it's not at all clear that eating sentient and/or sapient creatures of a different species qualifies as "cannibalism". You're either forgetting the context of the conversation, or you're giving humans special consideration but ignoring that some fantasy worlds have people who eat dragons (etc.) and that's not regarded as cannibalism.

Applying the term 'cannibalism' to a fantasy world could go by the standard definition of eating your own species. I think it's pretty clear from context that I didn't mean that, however. I don't think your correcting (or what you'd like to call what you did) me on my use of cannibalism here is constructive, because we don't have a better term for the fantastic taboo against eating intelligent species. And for good reason, because fantastic worlds aren't all the same, and the taboo would vary between them.

Nifft
2016-01-24, 10:19 AM
Applying the term 'cannibalism' to a fantasy world could go by the standard definition of eating your own species. I think it's pretty clear from context that I didn't mean that, however. I don't think your correcting (or what you'd like to call what you did) me on my use of cannibalism here is constructive, because we don't have a better term for the fantastic taboo against eating intelligent species. And for good reason, because fantastic worlds aren't all the same, and the taboo would vary between them.

People eat octopus, dolphin, and whale meat in real life.

Those are all types of animals which exhibit different degrees of intelligence.

Nobody thinks that it's appropriate to call octopus, dolphin, or whale-eaters "cannibals", because that's not what the word means.

Similarly, nobody calls a tiger which eats humans "cannibal". We call it a man-eating tiger. That's because tigers are not human, therefore eating humans does not make a tiger a cannibal.

It's not constructive for you to try to keep nit-picking your misuse of this fairly well-defined word in search of some kind of validation. You won't find it. The word means a thing, and not the thing you tried to use it to mean. There's really not much to debate here.

hymer
2016-01-24, 10:30 AM
There's really not much to debate here.

On that we can agree, at least.

Fri
2016-01-24, 11:07 AM
Just to add fuel to the fire, since elf, human, orc, dwarves et all can breed with each others, wouldn't it be proper to call them variant of a species instead of different species, so if they eat another variant it should be considered cannibalism? :smallcool:

Nifft
2016-01-24, 11:11 AM
Just to add fuel to the fire, since elf, human, orc, dwarves et all can breed with each others, wouldn't it be proper to call them variant of a species instead of different species, so if they eat another variant it should be considered cannibalism? :smallcool:

Therefore, since Dragons can interbreed with damn near anything, in your world everything is a sub-species of Dragon.

nedz
2016-01-24, 12:06 PM
Polymorph Human into a Pig
Kill Pig
Spit roast Pig
Eat Pork


Cannibalism ?

Leon
2016-01-24, 01:18 PM
Elves, The other white meat

GloatingSwine
2016-01-24, 01:22 PM
Dwarf Fortress elves do eat dwarves and humans, if they kill them. There's precedent.

And on the other side of the coin, there's thri-kreen and halflings in Dark Sun, who trade recipies for Elf Tartare...preferably within earshot of the party's elven member, while shiftily glancing at him.

Also the Bosmer in Elder Scrolls. Their state religion mandates cannibalism of foes defeated in battle. (also they're wacky reverse vegans, they eat only meat and use only animal products).

Mr.Moron
2016-01-24, 02:52 PM
Polymorph Human into a Pig
Kill Pig
Spit roast Pig
Eat Pork


Cannibalism ?

Yes. Also murder. If you take a a series of actions that results in the death of person and then consume them, that's a specific class of terrible act.

In the real world where the English language originates the only kind of persons are humans. Since there are no non-human persons that class of act can be called "Cannibalism". Technically* (see edit) "Cannibalism" means eating one's own species but we can understand that when a human commits cannibalism "Eating one's own" they are also "A person eating a person". There is no need for a term that means "A person eating another person" but not "Eating one's own species" because the two acts are always one and the same in our world, so English is not deficient for not having one. This doesn't change the fact the act you describe, along with killing and eating an elf, or kobold or an Orc or any other non-human person would fall into the same category of terrible act that is a human eating another human: "Person eating person".

Maybe it would make sense to invent a term for "Person eating another person that is not of their own", for use in a fantasy context since It's hardly a stretch that it may be seen as distinct from simply "Person eating another person" or "Person eating another person of their own". However it's like the difference between all the words we have for killing someone based on their relationship to you "Regicide", "Patricide", "Infanticide"... in the end it's all murder.



EDIT:
* The same general logic applies if you're using the more classic "Eating a human" definition of cannibalism rather than the more zoological one I'm using here. We still have no need of words that describe killing & eating a person who isn't a human, since we have no persons that aren't humans.

Nifft
2016-01-24, 03:09 PM
Yes. Also murder. If you take a a series of actions that results in the death of person and then consume them, that's a specific class of terrible act. In a game that I ran, the party found some half-fiend dragon eggs which hatched, and they were trying to raise the wyrmlings to be non-evil.

One of the PCs enjoyed using baleful polymorph on various enemies and then feeding the resulting small animals to the wyrmlings.

After doing this a few times, the one redeemed (non-evil) wyrmling asked, in draconic: "Are you sure this is okay?"

One of the other wyrmlings answered: "Yeah, it's great. It still tastes like a human!"

The party stopped using that particular tactic shortly thereafter.


Maybe it would make sense to invent a term for "Person eating another person that is not of their own", for use in a fantasy context since It's hardly a stretch that it may be seen as distinct from simply "Person eating another person" or "Person eating another person of their own". However it's like the difference between all the words we have for killing someone based on their relationship to you "Regicide", "Patricide", "Infanticide"... in the end it's all murder.

EDIT:
* The same general logic applies if you're using the more classic "Eating a human" definition of cannibalism rather than the more zoological one I'm using here. We still have no need of words that describe killing & eating a person who isn't a human, since we have no persons that aren't humans.

There's at least one video game (Stone Soup Dungeon Crawl) in which eating the meat of a sentient creature is a specific sin for which one of the gods will penalize you (if you follow that god), but AFAIR there isn't a specific term for the sin.

Some ideas:
- Sophovore
- Sapientarian
- Soylent Rainbow

nedz
2016-01-24, 03:51 PM
I tried looking up the etymology of cannibal, apparently it's from Caribbean so this is unhelpful.

TheCountAlucard
2016-01-24, 04:08 PM
I tried looking up the etymology of cannibal, apparently it's from Caribbean so this is unhelpful.Yeah, it turns out "entomology" is the study of insects, Perry the Platypus.

nedz
2016-01-24, 05:17 PM
Yeah, it turns out "entomology" is the study of insects, Perry the Platypus.

Any more random trivia you'd like to share with us ?

Etymology, rather than entomology, is the study of the origin of words. My hope was I could derive a word for the consumption of sapient beings from the etymology of cannibal. Unfortunately that isn't possible.

goto124
2016-01-24, 10:53 PM
One of the PCs enjoyed using baleful polymorph on various enemies and then feeding the resulting small animals to the wyrmlings.

After doing this a few times, the one redeemed (non-evil) wyrmling asked, in draconic: "Are you sure this is okay?"

One of the other wyrmlings answered: "Yeah, it's great. It still tastes like a human!"

The party stopped using that particular tactic shortly thereafter.

If the party was killing the enemies anyway, I don't see the problem. It's a better version of casting Prestidigitation for tastier food.

Nifft
2016-01-25, 01:10 AM
If the party was killing the enemies anyway, I don't see the problem. It's a better version of casting Prestidigitation for tastier food.

Apparently different things gross out different people.

You don't see a problem with eating a human who you just killed.

They did.

goto124
2016-01-25, 02:32 AM
Killing someone with the sole intention of eating is one thing. Eating someone whom you killed for legit reasons is another.

But yes, I can understand why they got a bit grossed out.

Besides, if they really want to redeem the wrymlings they'll have to make sure the kids don't get too used to the taste of human meat :smalltongue:

Polymorph solves the "humans have too little meat" problem. I wonder if polymorph helps with the diseases too...

Logosloki
2016-01-25, 07:33 AM
For humans in the D&D verse I would probably state cannibalism (we need a new word for this) would cover all humanoids and those that are humanoid like, such as giants. Probably other beings capable of speech would be off the menu but that would be on a case by case basis (Dragon Wyrmlings would be like veal, so tender, so tasty).

Winter_Wolf
2016-01-25, 10:23 AM
I don't really see the problem with eating sentient/sapient beings. Mostly the big issues are diseases (well hello cure disease!) and rampant murder "for food". Protein is protein. The only reasons humans in a fantasy world couldn't eat humanoids are actual divine punishment or being actually incapable of digesting the flesh. They wouldn't do it because they're a "civilized" race and only monstrous beings would do that.

In my world, dwarves would eat fey, and elves would be delicious. Gnomes and kobolds have issues because they're constantly trying to eat each other. Orcs are mostly vegetarians because they can digest almost anything but there's not much to eat except each other or some tough plants and tubers. They don't eat each other because Gruumsh smites orc- eaters as weaklings. Humans are basically agrarian and get along with everyone because they "gots all teh grubz". Including a few unsavory types that deal in humanoid flesh. Yes, human assassin-butchers.

Togath
2016-01-25, 11:25 AM
Hmm
For a custom setting I made...

Humans: Roughly as humans eat in real life(leaning toward habits in the 1700-1800s), varying by what is locally available.

Elves: archipelago dwelling humanoids, they're good at sailing, and have to be to get around their homeland. I've always had them as a race that consumes a lot of shallow temperate water seafood, such as fish, sea-plants, and shellfish, supplemented a little by plants that do well on the coast, and imported land animals(the primary native variety being a large suid that is fairly fatty, but with odd tasting meat, and used more often for labor, fur, and fat than for food[might be milkable? never pondered that aspect until now], as well as a variety of birds[which, I suppose could be hunted, but it wouldn't be especially efficient]).

Goblins: Very similar to humans, but with a bit heavier focus on foods that are easy to transport, or made form easy to transport ingredients(breads and sweet baked goods are favorites, and they often dry meats as well), due to frequently traveling(and in the current age, often become merchants and traders).

Trolls: Not especially agile, but good at sitting still for long periods of time. Probably rely on a diet with a lot of plants, with meat from time to time(I'd imagine, due to their lack of agility, they'd probably relying on ambushing prey). They tend to seek out minerals to ingest as well, gnawing on or licking stones, and have strong jaws and teeth(omnivorous diet oriented ones). They don't need to eat especially often, somewhat like a snake, and are usually solitary(so not much competition from other trolls). They're also fond of eggs.

Ogres: Similar to humans, but with a higher calorie intake. They particularly enjoy food with lots of spices(such as ginger or cinnamon, both local to their region, as well as imported varieties of spices), as well that things that can handle their humid, warm climate well(both in the sense of things that grow well there, as well as foods that don't spoil easily from the weather). Due to their size and strength, hunting is easier, but they also have an advanced enough society to farm animals for consumption, and due to plentiful native sugarcane, they enjoy sweets of various varieties, as well as simply chewing on stalks of it.

Orcs: In theory omnivorous, but the majority of their diet is plants supplemented with insects and arachnids. In the wild, they tend to eat similarly to orangutans(which they resemble culturally, though slightly more advanced), but in captivity(usually by ogres, which are a larger more advanced relative species) they usually consume what their masters give them(often a more grain-heavy diet, to cut on the costs).

Faeries: About half the size of humans, they tend to have trouble hunting or herding large animals due to their size, so meat in their diet tends to come from smaller creatures(such as flightless birds or rabbits), or things such as fish or crustaceans. They cannot fly, having wings only strong enough to generally prevent harm if they fall from a height, so they can't use that to their advantage when hunting generally. They commonly farm rice as a staple crop, alongside various vegetables and fruits(usually short bushes, rather than trees).

Tiktakkat
2016-01-25, 01:17 PM
Therefore, since Dragons can interbreed with damn near anything, in your world everything is a sub-species of Dragon.

Does that mean everyone tastes like chicken?


I would probably state cannibalism (we need a new word for this)

plus



Some ideas:
- Sophovore
- Sapientarian
- Soylent Rainbow

Sapiophagy is the act
Sophovore is the dietary classification
Sapientarian is the philosophical commitment
Soylent X is the brand name and type

Thus:

The sapientarian, whose people are not obligate sophovores, had his friends join him in his sapiophagy when he served Soylent Draconis at his weekend brunch.

veti
2016-01-25, 02:25 PM
Dwarves: love anything savory that you can carry about and eat on the go. Pies and pasties are their staple diet.

Orcs: invented the sausage. (The sausage roll, on the other hand, was invented by a dwarf.) Orcs have a huge and flavourful recipe repertoire, and the underlying goal of nearly all of it is to make the meat unrecognisable.

Wood elves: fruit, nuts, berries, mushrooms, some game, but not much because if a whole community of people tried to live mainly on game it'd be extinct in no time. ("No time" to an elf, anyway.)

Halflings and humans: close to our modern diet. Baked goods, fresh garden produce (berries, mushrooms, potatoes, carrots, onions etc.), milk, eggs, cheese. And beer. Can eat meat, but seldom do because it's expensive.

High elves: have closely guarded the secret of chocolate.

nedz
2016-01-25, 02:49 PM
Wood elves: fruit, nuts, berries, mushrooms, some game, but not much because if a whole community of people tried to live mainly on game it'd be extinct in no time. ("No time" to an elf, anyway.)

So how do your elves view the speed at which rabbits bread ?

Douche
2016-01-25, 03:15 PM
I feel like the sterotypes for elves and dwarves are backwards regarding diet. Elves should be big on game and meat, since the forest provides the opportunity to hunt animals. Dwarves should be nearly vegan, with a diet consisting of mostly root veggies and mushrooms, perhaps even supplementing it with insects.

Yeah, I don't get where elves being vegetarians came from. I feel like the biggest inspiration for the whole "respect nature" came from Native Americans, and they hunted all the time... The distinction being that they would thank the Earth Mother and apologize to the creature for taking it's life, and not let any of it go to waste.


EDIT:
* The same general logic applies if you're using the more classic "Eating a human" definition of cannibalism rather than the more zoological one I'm using here. We still have no need of words that describe killing & eating a person who isn't a human, since we have no persons that aren't humans.

Do you think, in the future, they will invent such a term if we find other intelligent life in the universe that also happens to be super delicious?

Togath
2016-01-25, 03:50 PM
Do you think, in the future, they will invent such a term if we find other intelligent life in the universe that also happens to be super delicious?

Popplers?tenlettersneeded

nedz
2016-01-25, 04:24 PM
Yeah, I don't get where elves being vegetarians came from. I feel like the biggest inspiration for the whole "respect nature" came from Native Americans, and they hunted all the time... The distinction being that they would thank the Earth Mother and apologize to the creature for taking it's life, and not let any of it go to waste.
Runequest - or was that Elves are Vegetables ?


Do you think, in the future, they will invent such a term if we find other intelligent life in the universe that also happens to be super delicious?
Our chance to coin it now !

Mr.Moron
2016-01-25, 04:44 PM
Do you think, in the future, they will invent such a term if we find other intelligent life in the universe that also happens to be super delicious?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GOAS-g5EXUo

VoxRationis
2016-01-25, 04:53 PM
Do you think, in the future, they will invent such a term if we find other intelligent life in the universe that also happens to be super delicious?

"Wild game."

veti
2016-01-25, 06:54 PM
So how do your elves view the speed at which rabbits bread ?

Depending on the relative population densities of elves and rabbits...

... OK, yes, it's entirely possible that they could eat rabbit just about every day. Assuming a fairly small elven community, just a couple of dozen families at most.

For larger communities, though - well, rabbits do budget for a lot of attrition of their numbers, but there's such a thing as futility even for them. Hunt too many, and the survivors will move away, and then your hunters would have to go unreasonably long distances to find them.

OK, hillbilly elves could eat meat all the time. But for city elves, it's more a once-a-week sort of thing.

JAL_1138
2016-01-26, 01:17 PM
Humans have been known to eat anything that doesn't talk, no matter how horrrible the flavor--and worse, sell it to you. The most infamous of these purveyors of questionable (in)edibles--which may constitute a subrace on their own--are the Dibblers, small sharp-featured humans with a tendency to sidle so much that crabs think they walk sideways, usually selling things that would make an orc sick, or make orc-sick look palatable in comparison. There seems to be one of these Dibblers everywhere, but their names follow a similar pattern and their appearance, behavior, and speech patterns are remarkably consistent--as is the low quality of the foodstuffs they sell. Examples include Cut-Me-Own-Throat Dibbler, Fair Go Dibbler, Swallow-Me-Own-Blowdart Dhlang-Dhlang, Disembowel-Meself-Honorably Dibhala, and Cut-Me-Own-Hand-Off Dhblah.

Eating a sausage-inna-bun purchased from a Dibbler is generally considered one of the vilest, most miserable experiences one can ever undergo, and yet somehow, even if you've already had one, a Dibbler can persuade you to buy and eat another one sometime later, perhaps a few days after you've recovered from the first.

NRSASD
2016-01-26, 03:38 PM
Do you think, in the future, they will invent such a term if we find other intelligent life in the universe that also happens to be super delicious?

This would have profound implications for the SETI project. The Search for ExtraTerrestrial Intelligence has ended, but the Search for Extra Tasty Individuals has only just begun...

Fri
2016-01-27, 12:11 PM
There's actually a... I think Larry Niven story about this.

Basically there's a race of carnivorous alien who like to eat new things, even (or especially?) sentient beings, but they're civilized and it's the future, so they don't just conquer worlds and eat things. They basically make licensing agreements to new species they meet to clone them specifically for eating. And they have advanced technology, so those new found species usually are desperate for those new spacefaring tech.

The story is about an earth diplomat for that species, who basically got his dna to be basis for their human-meat, traded for the alien's superior technology. He got really depressed and existential on how at this second there's millions of him being eaten in another planet (even if the clone is specifically meat-only, it's still horrifying) so at the end he killed himself.

Nifft
2016-01-30, 10:58 AM
He got really depressed and existential on how at this second there's millions of him being eaten in another planet (even if the clone is specifically meat-only, it's still horrifying) so at the end he killed himself.

So basically he took revenge on them by wasting a bunch of food.

We need more of that kind of morality in children's literature.

Raimun
2016-01-30, 11:14 AM
Hah, have you played Iron Kingdoms: Unleashed?

Gatormen eat everyone they can. Even party members who fought by their side.

sktarq
2016-01-30, 09:54 PM
Why racial? Why shouldn't each race cover a range, of cultures, of cuisines, of morality (of what is and is not allowed)

I do tend to have certain traits that carry into their food.

Elves: Waste not, so you can still harvest more 500 years later. So lots of oddball meat cuts and highly varied seasonal dishes. Nuts, tree bark, roots, waterplants, cacti to an elf every animal or plant they can see is food. Also with long lives they can. Shape entire forests into their gardens-often based on vertical layered gardens.

Dwarves: A strong tendency to store food-especially salted food. Heavily preserved food that lasts for many poor seasons and usually grows in short intense season (high alpine crops like potatoes, buckwheat, etc)

Gnomes: A tendency to alchemy in this race mmay well come from the gnomish pull to make sure they have food in the bad years of their long lives. So fermentation, pickling etc are strong influences as are double boilers and flavor rich extracts.

Goblins- with an equal alchemical bent to gnomes but often dealing with poor meat and conditions. So advanced stewing and perhaps curries and powerful sauces on nearly blackened goat offal type.

Orcs- orcs vary so much culturally for me to make generalizations. But master smokers are are common theme (actually split with their traditional enemies the elves)

kraftcheese
2016-01-30, 10:38 PM
Why racial? Why shouldn't each race cover a range, of cultures, of cuisines, of morality (of what is and is not allowed)

I do tend to have certain traits that carry into their food.

Elves: Waste not, so you can still harvest more 500 years later. So lots of oddball meat cuts and highly varied seasonal dishes. Nuts, tree bark, roots, waterplants, cacti to an elf every animal or plant they can see is food. Also with long lives they can. Shape entire forests into their gardens-often based on vertical layered gardens.

Dwarves: A strong tendency to store food-especially salted food. Heavily preserved food that lasts for many poor seasons and usually grows in short intense season (high alpine crops like potatoes, buckwheat, etc)

Gnomes: A tendency to alchemy in this race mmay well come from the gnomish pull to make sure they have food in the bad years of their long lives. So fermentation, pickling etc are strong influences as are double boilers and flavor rich extracts.

Goblins- with an equal alchemical bent to gnomes but often dealing with poor meat and conditions. So advanced stewing and perhaps curries and powerful sauces on nearly blackened goat offal type.

Orcs- orcs vary so much culturally for me to make generalizations. But master smokers are are common theme (actually split with their traditional enemies the elves)

The idea of Uncle Borz Gurmush's Famous Smoked Salamis is making me slaver tbh

AMFV
2016-02-02, 12:25 PM
One solution is to look at the race's physiology and then backtrack their likely eating habits from that. For example, Orcs are large and muscular, so you can compare their eating habits to animals that are similarly developed (or humans with similar development.) Orcs would probably need a lot of carbohydrates to put on that amount of mass (it's possible with meats, but carnivores tend to be leaner, because they aren't successful hunting most of the time, compare a cow to a tiger for example). So you could then have them having large amounts of agriculture (which doesn't quite fit with their typical fantasy design, but could be interesting to integrate), they are probably omnivorous though, and are therefore relatively close to people.

Elves are very lean and sinewy, so they would probably not have substantial caloric requirements, also their long life suggests that they don't eat a lot of things that have any kind of toxicity to their bodies (which might be very different than for humans). Certainly a vegetarian diet is possible, there are many lean animals who are vegetarian, although that comes with some significant drawbacks, deer for example, and other large grazing animals have to rest for long periods while their food digests, which is common in large herbivores (although you could arguably explain meditation away as this).

Dwarves are short and compact, they need the materials to develop a lot of muscle structure, but don't need as much in terms of other development. They also tend to be slightly overweight. You can extrapolate that their diet would be high in proteins and carbohydrates (meat and potatoes). We don't know a lot about Dwarven dietary related diseases, but they might tend to suffer from them as they get older. We'd also need to know more about their activity level. Elves loaf about or prance through forests, Orcs are involved in Warfare, Dwarves are more varied.

Mr.Moron
2016-02-02, 12:55 PM
There's actually a... I think Larry Niven story about this.

Basically there's a race of carnivorous alien who like to eat new things, even (or especially?) sentient beings, but they're civilized and it's the future, so they don't just conquer worlds and eat things. They basically make licensing agreements to new species they meet to clone them specifically for eating. And they have advanced technology, so those new found species usually are desperate for those new spacefaring tech.

The story is about an earth diplomat for that species, who basically got his dna to be basis for their human-meat, traded for the alien's superior technology. He got really depressed and existential on how at this second there's millions of him being eaten in another planet (even if the clone is specifically meat-only, it's still horrifying) so at the end he killed himself.

To any advance aliens that might be intercepting our internet communications:

That guy was a whimp and lame, and giving up meat DNA is clearly a low price to pay for your wonderful technology. You can clone as many of me as you want strict mean construction, you know provided you don't grow the whole brain-and-consciousness part and make it all murdery. My prices are reasonable and I assure you I won't get all angsty over it.